Mickles: Coach Ron Roberts, Lions enjoy being the favorite

Advocate file photo by CATHERINE THRELKELD -- Southeastern running back Rasheed Harrell races toward the goal line during last year's FCS playoff game against Sam Houston State at Strawberry Stadium in Hammond.

LAKE CHARLES — One year ago, Southeastern Louisiana University football coach Ron Roberts came to Southland Conference media day with a team that was flying well under the radar. Coming off a 5-6 record in 2012, Roberts’ first season at the school after a highly successful five-year stay at Delta State, SLU was picked to … Continue reading →

Four downs: Southland Conference media days

After having eight football-playing schools in 2013, the Southland Conference will welcome three new members this fall. Houston Baptist will be eligible for SLC honors this season, but Abilene Christian and Incarnate Word will have to wait until at least 2017 to be fully eligible. All 11 schools will play eight league games — one … Continue reading →

Wave assistant Strohm won’t maintain status

There’s going to be a shifting on the Tulane basketball bench this season. A Green Wave spokesman confirmed assistant coach Jeff Strohm will not be maintaining his position on Ed Conroy’s staff. “I was very pleased with my staff this season, but we are looking to shift things around,” Conroy said. “We are still … Continue reading →

Early slate will test Tech

IRVING, Texas — Louisiana Tech’s early schedule is absolutely brutal. The Bulldogs were 4-8 overall (3-5 Conference USA) in 2013, the first season under coach Skip Holtz. This season, they play four of their first five games against bowl teams from last season in Oklahoma, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, North Texas and Auburn. … Continue reading →

Holtz seeks more ways to use Dixon

Associated Press photo -- Louisiana Tech running back Kenneth Dixon, left, smiles during a playful interview by coach Skip Holtz at the Conference USA media day Wednesday in Irving, Texas.

IRVING, Texas — Skip Holtz is glad to have junior running back Kenneth Dixon, who missed three games last season with a knee injury, healthy for 2014. But the second-year Louisiana Tech coach would like to find more innovative ways to use Dixon, who rushed for 917 yards last season, within his offense. … Continue reading →

All-Conference USA preseason Offensive player of the year: Rakeem Cato, Sr., QB, Marshall Defensive player of the year: James Rouse, Sr., DL, Marshall Special teams player of the year: Hunter Mullins, Sr., P, UAB OffenseContinue reading →

Louisiana Tech schedule Coach: Skip Holtz (4-8 one season, 92-79 overall) 2013 RECORD: 4-8 (3-5 Conference USA) Aug 30: at Oklahoma, 6 p.m. Sept. 7: at UL-Lafayette, 6 … Continue reading →

Sun Belt media day: Coaches laud the Cajuns’ chances

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- UL-Lafayette coach Mark Hudspeth speaks during Sun Belt Conference media day at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Tuesday, July 22, 2014.

The Sun Belt Conference’s football coaches aren’t ready to concede the title, but they certainly painted a Ragin’ Cajuns logo on the target Tuesday at the league’s media day. Louisiana-Lafayette was the unanimous pick in the preseason poll announced over the weekend, and the Cajuns’ status as runaway favorites for a second straight title — … Continue reading →

Sun Belt notes: Cajuns shrug at preseason accolades

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Louisiana-Lafayette running back Alonzo Harris speaks during Sun Belt Conference media day at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Tuesday, July 22, 2014.

The preseason prognostications have been kind to UL-Lafayette. The Sun Belt Conference’s coaches unanimously tabbed the Cajuns to win the league. Eight Cajuns found their way onto the preseason all-Sun Belt first team, and two more made the second team. And senior quarterback Terrance Broadway was the pick as Offensive Player of the … Continue reading →

Sun Belt media day: Four downs

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Sun Belt Commissioner Karl Benson speaks during media day at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Tuesday, July 22, 2014.

1. GROUP OF FIVE The term “Group of Five” was quite popular Tuesday. It refers to the five mid-major conferences — the Sun Belt, Conference USA, Mountain West, American and Mid-American — that will compete for an automatic spot in one of the New Year’s Day “access” bowls as part of the new … Continue reading →

Southland media day preview: Team capsules

Southland Conference logo

Abilene Christian COACH: Ken Collums PLAYERS: DE Nick Richardson and TE Jonathan Parker WHAT TO WATCH FOR: When Abilene Christian won in 2013, it won big. Though the Wildcats only went 6-5, they outscored their opponents 370-114 in their victories. During his junior campaign, QB John David Baker … Continue reading →

Tulane to practice at four sites

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Tulane linebacker Kyle Davis, left, battles linebacker Nico Marley at practice in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013.

Construction on Yulman Stadium isn’t slowing down in August. So Tulane’s football program will be exiled from its campus one last time as it prepares for the season. On Tuesday, the Green Wave released its preseason practice schedule, which features four different practice sites around New Orleans. Coach Curtis Johnson opens fall camp Aug. 4, the … Continue reading →

Cajuns face adjustment as unabashed Sun Belt favorites

Advocate staff photo by BRYAN TUCK -- Louisiana-Lafayette coach Mark Hudspeth

They have become accustomed to the underdog role, and Louisiana-Lafayette’s Mark Hudspeth had his players relishing the “prove-them-wrong” role during his first two years as the Ragin’ Cajuns football coach. Even last year, his team still had to share top honors in the preseason coaches poll with state rival UL-Monroe. Now the question for the 2014 season: … Continue reading →

Sun Belt media day preview: Team capsules

Associated Press photo by Gerald Herbert -- Louisiana-Monroe coach Todd Berry

Appalachian State COACH: Scott Satterfield PLAYERS: Junior QB Kameron Bryant, senior DE Ronald Blair EASY TO ANSWER: Bryant completed 71 percent of his passes for 2,713 yards, and RB Marcus Cox ran for 1,250 yards and 15 scores last year, joining five returning offensive line starters. … Continue reading →

Sun Belt media day preview: Five questions, five answers

Advocate staff photo by BRAD KEMP -- Cajuns running back Elijah McGuire

Q: Can the Cajuns win the league outright? The league’s coaches and the major preseason magazines were unanimous that UL-Lafayette is the class of the league. The Cajuns have their main offensive weapons returning in quarterback Terrance Broadway and running backs Alonzo Harris and Elijah McGuire. The defense was … Continue reading →

Coaches pick UL-Lafayette to win Sun Belt

Associated Press file photo by BILL HABER -- Louisiana-Lafayette coach Mark Hudspeth holds the championship trophy after the Ragin' Cajuns beat Tulane 24-21 on Dec. 21 to win the New Orleans Bowl in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

It’s pretty clear which team the Sun Belt Conference’s coaches expect to be on top this fall. Louisiana-Lafayette claimed all 11 first-place votes in the preseason football coaches poll, announced Saturday. The Ragin’ Cajuns tied for the league title last year with Arkansas State, but the Cajuns (121 voting points) easily outdistanced the Red Wolves in the … Continue reading →

Ascension Catholic’s Delmond Landry commits to UL-Lafayette

Delmond Landry wasn’t sure what to expect when he was called into coach Mark Hudspeth’s office Saturday during Louisiana-Lafayette’s football camp. But soon the Ascension Catholic defensive lineman got a scholarship offer from Hudspeth — one he eagerly accepted. “We talked for a while,” Landry said, “and then (Hudspeth) offered me a scholarship and I accepted.” The 6-foot-4, … Continue reading →

New Cajun Field seating available for new season-ticket holders

LAFAYETTE — With enhancements coming to Cajun Field for the 2014 season, a pair of prime midfield seating areas for potential Louisiana-Lafayette football season-ticket holders are now available. Seats in Sections P and Q on the east side of Cajun Field are available for $150. All seats purchased as season tickets come with complimentary … Continue reading →

Trio of Louisiana backs named to Doak Walker Award watch list

LSU’s Terrence Magee, Louisiana-Lafayette’s Alonzo Harris and Louisiana Tech’s Kenneth Dixon were named to the Doak Walker Award watch list announced Thursday. The award is presented annually to the nation’s top college running back. Last season, Magee rushed for 626 yards and eight touchdowns with six receptions for 49 yards and two kickoff returns for 45 … Continue reading →

Elfrid Payton’s finding his place with the Magic

The Orlando Magic's Elfrid Payton drives around the Houston Rockets' Nick Johnson during an NBA summer league game in Orlando, Fla., on Monday, July 7, 2014. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

In the weeks leading up to last month’s NBA draft, no player’s stock rose more dramatically than Elfid Payton’s. At the start of the college season, Payton’s name couldn’t be found on any draft boards, let alone in the first round. But as he led Louisiana-Lafayette to the NCAA tournament, averaging 19 points, nearly six … Continue reading →

Cajuns’ Terrance Broadway on Davey O’Brien watch list

Louisiana-Lafayette quarterback Terrance Broadway (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

FORT WORTH, Texas — Louisiana-Lafayette senior quarterback Terrance Broadway was one of 39 players named Wednesday to the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award watch list. Broadway, a former Capitol High standout, is the fifth Ragin’ Cajun this summer to appear on a preseason watch list, joining Daniel Quave (Lombardi), Mykhael Quave (Lombardi), Justin Hamilton (Lombardi), Dominique … Continue reading →

Southeastern puts 15 on preseason All-Southland team

Advocate file photo by CATHERINE THRELKELDSoutheastern Louisiana quarterback Bryan Bennett rushes past Sam Houston State's Desmond Fite during the Lions' 34-21 win in Strawberry Stadium last season.

FRISCO, Texas — Twenty of the 58 Southland Conference football players who earned all-conference honors after last season earned spots on the Southland Conference preseason all-conference football teams, the league office announced Wednesday a week ahead of its media day at L’auberge Resort in Lake Charles. Reigning conference player of the year Bryan Bennett of … Continue reading →

Ragin’ Cajuns’ Jamal Robinson on Biletnikoff watch list

Advocate photo by BRAD KEMP -- Louisiana-Lafayette wide receiver Jamal Robinson looks for running room after making a catch as Louisiana-Monroe cornerback Vincent Eddie closes in last season at Cajun Field in Lafayette.

Louisiana-Lafayette receiver Jamal Robinson, of Slidell, and Louisiana-Monroe receiver Rashon Ceaser, of Clinton, were named to the Biletnikoff Award watch list, the Tallahassee Quarterback Club Foundation, Inc., announced Tuesday. The award, which will be revealed Dec. 11 on The Home Depot College Football Awards Show on ESPN, annually recognizes the most outstanding receiver in college football. Brandin Cooks, … Continue reading →

Tulane baseball coach David Pierce hits the ground running

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- New Tulane baseball coach David Pierce  meets with fans at Bruno's Tavern on Thursday.

There was no team meeting for David Pierce to call. Instead, when Tulane’s newest baseball coach took over the Green Wave program last month, rather than gathering players in the clubhouse, he was handed a sheet of phone numbers and a plane ticket. With nearly his entire roster outside of New Orleans playing in summer leagues, there was … Continue reading →

Four Cajuns on Lombardi Award watch list

Four UL-Lafayette football players — offensive linemen Daniel Quave and Mykhael Quave, defensive lineman Justin Hamilton and linebacker Dominque Tovell — were among 123 athletes from 76 universities named Monday to the Rotary Lombardi Award watch list. Daniel Quave, a 6-foot-3, 324-pound senior, earned second-team All-Sun Belt Conference honors in 2013 after starting all 13 games at … Continue reading →

Stanley Roberts Jr. signs with Tulane

Associated Press photo by RICH SCHULTZ -- Tulane coach Ed Conroy watches the action during a game against Kansas State last month.

There’s a familiar name returning to Louisiana college basketball. Stanley Roberts, Jr., the son of former LSU standout and NBA center Stanley Roberts, Sr., signed with Tulane on Monday. The 6-foot-8, 240-pound post player is the latest and most under-the-radar addition to the Green Wave’s 2014-15 roster. The 17-year-old Rolling Hills Estates, Calif., product … Continue reading →